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Title: The development of Dicken's treatment of high society, with special reference to the period 1833-1852
Author: Wilkins, Michael Kenneth
Awarding Body: University of London
Current Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Date of Award: 1970
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This thesis is divided into two parts, each covering roughly a decade and concentrating on a major phase in the development of Dickens's treatment of High Society. A general introduction gives reasons for reassessing this development and indicates the lines of argument to be followed with an explanation of the terminology involved. Part One, Chapter I, discusses the background to Dickens's treatment of High Society in the period up to Barnaby. It pays special attention to historical and literary influences and compares prevailing attitudes to High Society with Dickens's own. Chapter 2 is a detailed study of the parts Cordon and Chester play in Barnaby. It highlights the importance of Gordon in Dickens's treatment of High Society and sees Barnaby as the culmination of one phase of its development. A general introduction to Part Two emphasised that the eighteen-forties was a decade of change and stresses the problems of discussing such a decade. Chapter 1 is a further background chapter, following the same lines as Part One, Chapter 1. It shows Dickens increasingly discriminating between High Society as an institution and individual members of it. Three Chapters on individual novels shows Dickens's progress towards an overall view3of Society and his maturing ability to understand and portray the upper classes. In the Chapter on Bleak House Dicken's treatment of High Society is seen to have matured and the portraits of Sir Leicester and Lady Dedlock are discussed as the culmination of development traced through preceding chapters. Chanter 5 is a brief survey of the period after 1852 and suggests that when further development there is merely a refinement of attitudes and techniques apparent in Bleak House. A brief conclusion sums up the argument of the thesis as a whole.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: English Literature